Marbles PR backs off from identity dispute

Public relations agency Marbles has decided not to pursue the legal proceedings it was considering against HFC Bank over identity similarities with the newly launched Internet credit card of the same name (DW 15 October).

The PR group had been considering legal action over the visual copyright of its marble logo, which it claimed has similarities with elements of the credit card’s visual imagery.

Both companies use images of glass marbles as part of their visual identities.

PR agency joint-managing director Sue Beard says it has been advised that it would be difficult to prove the bank was technically using the image as a logo rather than an element of its identity.

“It would be very difficult to prove that they [HFC] were using the marble as a logo, so we will not be pursing that particular avenue at the moment. It would be far too costly,” she says.

HFC brand consultant Wolff Olins maintains it carried out the appropriate brand registration checks before registering the Internet credit card name for the financial services sector.

However, HFC has not managed to procure the Web address,, from the PR agency, which refused to sell its URL.

A Wolff Olins spokeswoman this week said earlier that reports in The Independent newspaper, claiming that it and HFC had failed to check aspects of the brand’s Internet registration in good time, were “misreported”. The consultancy will “be acting” on the story, she says.

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